Mollie Douthit | New Works
Exhibit Runs: Sept 4 – Oct 21, 2018
My work is a visual diary of my life, using paint in a way that feels like writing. I depict ordinary, personal situations that contain emotive objects or people that are important to me. Painting provides a meditation on those subjects and permits me to better see, understand, and transcribe my life.
I work primarily wet on wet, enjoying the fluidity of paint to gain a precision and clarity about the subject I am painting. When I feel that clarity, or I am hesitant of the direction the painting needs to go I will stop. If unfinished the painting may sit for an extended period of time before discovering its direction.
Titles allow my mind to wander in and out of memories. Fragments of these thoughts are pulled together as I devise a title that helps me reignite a thought pattern, or layered meaning that references both the process of painting, the subject, or other influences in my life at the time I was making that piece.
Historically, I place my work in relation to the 18th century still life painters, specifically Jean-Baptiste-Siméon Chardin and his work with his own everyday items. Also, I appreciate the quiet found in Gwen John and Giorgio Morandi’s work. Contemporary influences include Alice Neel, Chantal Joffe, and Lois Dodd. These painters allow paint to speak for itself and for the subject; with their own language, they each extend something beyond the surface of a painting.
While I prefer to live rurally viewing work in person is crucial to my practice. I often visit cities seeking specific bodies of work to spend time with. Recently, I researched Vincent van Gogh’s work in Amsterdam. Literature and poetry is an invaluable source of inspiration. I gravitate towards writers who use quotidian subjects that are similar to my own. I enjoy literature and poetry that holds a direct tone, yet remains penetrable and interesting. Writers I align these qualities with are Lydia Davis, Sylvia Plath, and J.D. Salinger.